FREE e-Newsletter
Important News - Hot Topics
Get them Now!

Top News

SHOT Show 2014: Safariland Honors Calif. Agent Saved by Vest

January 16, 2014  | 

SHOT Show 2014: Safariland Honors Calif. Agent Saved by Vest

In an emotional ceremony Wednesday on the floor of the SHOT Show in Las Vegas, Safariland honored the latest member of the company’s Saves Club.

Agent Nate Castro of the California Department of Corrections (CDC) was shot twice in the chest with a .40 caliber handgun during a Nov. 5 operation to apprehend a dangerous fugitive in Fresno. Castro’s Level IIIA Safariland body armor stopped the rounds, which would have been likely fatal, and he suffered no injuries other than significant bruising. Castro was one of 45 saves attributed to Safariland armor or duty gear during 2013.

Introducing the 16-year CDC veteran and explaining to the audience the purpose of the Saves Club, Safariland’s Ed Hinchey said the program represents not just officers whose lives have been saved but men and women who still have their spouses and children who still have their parents.

Castro choked up as he was asked to tell the story of what happened to him nine weeks ago. “I can still smell the smoke,” he said.

Castro serves as a member of the Pacific Southwest Regional Fugitive Task Force—a special operations team composed of U.S. Marshals, local Fresno area law enforcement, Homeland Security officers, and the CDC.

For 16 months the unit had been pursuing a man who was wanted for false imprisonment, kidnapping, rape, and torture. On Nov. 5, they received a tip that the fugitive was holed up in a Fresno apartment. The team was called out and sent to the address. Castro said when he was called out that afternoon he figured he would just get some overtime that would help him pay some bills and then be home to his wife and three kids soon. Most fugitives surrender and comply with the team, he explained.

This fugitive, Jerry Vue, 27, had other plans.

Castro and the team arrived at the duplex-style apartment and questioned a resident who said Vue was not inside. Then the team made entry to search for Vue.

At first the search and clearance of the dwelling proceeded without incident. Then Castro started to clear the garage. He opened the door leading from the house to the garage, started to step inside, and was met with a fusillade of shots.

Hit twice, Castro went down. A sharp firefight ensued between the other members of the team and Vue. Vue was killed. Castro and two other officers suffered minor injuries. “Our guys in the task force had a good day, but it was a bad day for the bad guy,” Castro said.

Castro is the 1,876 member of the Safariland Saves Club. During the ceremony he lauded praise upon all the people who designed and manufactured his vest. “If it wasn’t for the people who made my vest, I wouldn’t be here,” he said.—David Griffith

 

 

Tags: Body Armor, Safariland, SHOT Show, Fugitives from Justice, Assaults on Officers, Officer Involved Shootings, Safariland Saves Program


Comments (1)

Displaying 1 - 1 of 1

regular guy @ 1/17/2014 7:25 PM

Way to go Nate!! I worked with Nate years ago back at the joint. He's a great guy and I'm glad he was honored.

Join the Discussion





POLICE Magazine does not tolerate comments that include profanity, personal attacks or antisocial behavior (such as "spamming" or "trolling"). This and other inappropriate content or material will be removed. We reserve the right to block any user who violates this, including removing all content posted by that user.

Other Recent News

Video: Ferguson Chief Asks Why No Guard Help During Monday Riot
Ferguson Police Chief Tom Jackson is trying to find out why National Guard troops were not...
Gunman Shoots at Austin Buildings, Including Police HQ
A gunman opened fire at four different buildings, including APD headquarters, the Mexican...
Spirit of Blue Holiday Wreaths Available from Whitney Wreath
The Spirit of Blue Foundation has worked with Whitney Wreath to make available a blue...
2 FBI Agents Shot in Missouri
Two FBI agents were shot early Wednesday morning in north St. Louis County. This incident...
Man, 20, Dies Amid Ferguson Protests
Family members said Joshua's death is tied to the protests that consumed Ferguson after...

Get Your FREE Trial Issue and Win a Gift! Subscribe Today!
Yes! Please rush me my FREE TRIAL ISSUE of POLICE magazine and FREE Officer Survival Guide with tips and tactics to help me safely get out of 10 different situations.

Just fill in the form to the right and click the button to receive your FREE Trial Issue.

If POLICE does not satisfy you, just write "cancel" on the invoice and send it back. You'll pay nothing, and the FREE issue is yours to keep. If you enjoy POLICE, pay only $25 for a full one-year subscription (12 issues in all). Enjoy a savings of nearly 60% off the cover price!

Offer valid in US only. Outside U.S., click here.
It's easy! Just fill in the form below and click the red button to receive your FREE Trial Issue.
First Name:
Last Name:
Rank:
Agency:
Address:
City:
State:
  
Zip Code:
 
Country:
We respect your privacy. Please let us know if the address provided is your home, as your RANK / AGENCY will not be included on the mailing label.
E-mail Address:

Police Magazine